Bleak House Test | Mid-Book Test - Hard

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This test consists of 5 short answer questions, 10 short essay questions, and 1 (of 3) essay topics.

Short Answer Questions

1. Mrs. Jellyby's response to Caddy's wedding announcement is one of ___________.

2. Tulkinghorn informs Lady Dedlock that ___________.

3. Richard decides to be a lawyer because ___________.

4. Mr. George has visited Grandfather Smallweed regarding ___________.

5. What is the Man From Shrophsire's basic problem?

Short Essay Questions

1. Dickens brings poverty and wealth together to create intrigue in the story's plot. What is young Jo's involvement in the plot and why is he important?

2. Discuss Krook's Rag and Bottle Shop? Is he a good businessman? Is there anything symbolic about the shop?

3. Who is Volumnia Dedlock? Discuss her role and her physical appearance.

4. Why does Mr. Guppy so easily agree that his marriage proposal to Esther is now moot?

5. Richard Carstone has a strange way of seeing money. How does Esther illustrate his propensity to rationalize his spending?

6. George has been a wayward son of Mrs. Rouncewell's and has only now reacquainted himself with his brother. What is the new connection between them?

7. What is the reader's impression of detective Bucket? How does Dickens accomplish his portrayal of Bucket?

8. It seems curious that Dickens' characters tend to go to certain places for no apparent reason, such as Jarndyce agreeing to visit Neckett's place. In any case, a curious theme that seems to resurface is the neglect of children. Discuss your ideas about why Dickens continues to bring up this theme.

9. Discuss Dickens' opinion of Nemo's good Christian burial. Is his attitude positive?

10. Why has Chesney Wold become quiet and dismal? How is it different now from before?

Essay Topics

Write an essay for ONE of the following topics:

Essay Topic 1

The Rouncewell family is in the iron business, Mr. Rouncewell being an "ironmaster." Research industrial progress in England in the 1850s, what had been accomplished by that time, and what was in the works. How did industry affect the country, in general, at that time?

Essay Topic 2

Several times in Bleak House Dickens describes the most disgusting and unsanitary conditions of London cemeteries. What were those conditions? Why were they allowed to get to this state? Have they changed? Research the history of London burial grounds and write a detailed essay, using images, if possible.

Essay Topic 3

Write a well-researched essay on England's "work-houses" for the indigent. You should include how they came to be, what they offered, the conditions present, and whether anything like them exists today. If they were closed, when and why did this take place?

(see the answer keys)

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